Working from home has become far more acceptable in the past year and a half of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, it’s even become something people aspire to—the months of the pandemic saw a rise in entrepreneurial ventures around the world, as folks tried to figure out how to stay employed and safe. If you’re one of those brave pandemic-era entrepreneurs, you may have started a new small business as well.
Maybe you’re considering opening a nail salon, a space where you can combine your passion for nail art with your passion for being a self-starter. Well, the good news is that it’s not only possible to start a nail salon from your own home, it’s pretty easy to get done as well. That said, it still takes some doing, especially in the beginning. This is the same as any other endeavor. When you buy a new car, for example, you make sure to use an auto loan calculator to make sure you can afford the monthly payment for the duration of the loan term before signing the paperwork at the dealership and taking on the responsibility of an auto loan. You take criteria like your down payment and credit score into account, as well as the APR (Annual Percentage Rate) offered by the financial institution. Similarly, when you’re starting a business like a nail salon, you need to take a lot of criteria into account before you give your first gel manicure.
How will you finance your business?
All businesses need startup capital, whether you’re starting a spa or a deli. Start by making a detailed list of all the supplies you’ll need for the salon. Everything costs money—cotton balls, cuticle cream, buffers, rhinestones, bowls, nail polish remover, and all the rest. Do you need to upgrade your HVAC system so that you have proper ventilation, now that you’ll have the nail polish and acetone fumes in your living room? Speaking of, do you want to dedicate a specific room of the house to the salon? All of these questions must be answered ahead of time. Once you have a comprehensive list of expenses, see if you qualify for a business loan. Just like with an auto loan, make sure that you do your due diligence before committing to a lender for a specific loan amount and a specific amount of time.
How will you promote your business?
Just because you have the cotton balls and neon colors of nail polish, doesn’t mean you’re ready to go. Now you need clients! Consider offering a really great deal to friends and family as a way of publicizing your work, or a lower rate for the first week or so of business. Use social media to get your gel nail ideas out there by making short videos of gel manicures on your mobile device and uploading them to Instagram or TikTok. Host giveaways as incentives to get clients in your doors, and encourage them to post on their social media profiles as well. Showcase the diversity of your mani-pedi skills—all the different colors, nail art designs, glitter, and other gorgeous look possibilities that you put forward help to promote your excellent mani services.
Where can you get business advice?
There are plenty of business advisors out there who can give you some advice during the first little while, and it can be nice to feel that someone has your back as you wade into the waters of entrepreneurship. There are also self-help tools where you can learn skills, like how to take out business lines of credit or how to get the best rate from your nail polish suppliers. Don’t be afraid to ask for help—a simple search online will find you plenty of reliable information.